After weeks of sweltering days and nights, the morning was cool, with a mackerel sky. I wore a windbreaker on my scooter ride to work. Autumn is still a long way off, but it looks like we can expect arid, if still hot, days and cooler nights.
It has been the most serene summer break that anyone can remember at the main library. Not that it hasn't been busy, but we haven't had the numbers of unsupervised children and teens this year that we've had in the past.
I can only guess why that is so. The nearby Life Skills Academy, which was a program for teens ejected from the high schools, is gone, I heard. The city buses have new routes that don't involve transfers at the old main terminal across the street. Several library branches have more public access computers now, (the contrast between Monday, when the branches are closed, and Tuesday, was noticeable this week). The shift of Internet traffic from PC's to portable devices, chiefly "smart phones", may be a factor too, though iPhones and Blackberrys are rarely seen on the premises. I wonder whether the Web has simply lost its novelty.
Whatever the reason, it's been a pleasant surprise . The library has been more like a library ought to be than it has been in a long time. People are coming in to use it, not to see if their friends are there. When we are needed, it is to help people do their work, not to make children behave. It wasn't what we expected over the summer break.
1 month ago